Dun Laoghaire Harbour hopes to create 1000 new jobs according to the new Consultation Harbour Masterplan, on public display this Saturday and Sunday from 12 noon to 6pm at the Terminal building in the harbour. Mr Leo Varadkar, T.D., Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport visited the Harbour Board today to view the Masterplan model and the plans.
"The Masterplan will position Dun Laoghaire Harbour as a marine, leisure and tourism destination of international calibre", says Gerry Dunne, Chief Executive Officer, Dun Laoghaire Harbour Board. "We need to spend an average of €5m a year on maintaining and developing the Harbour infrastructure. The Masterplan will involve investment of more than €230m, over the next 10-15 years and will result in 1000 sustainable jobs in areas such as tourism, marine service companies, select retail, and food and beverage."
Leo Varadkar TD, Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport said "I welcome the master-planning initiative being taken by Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company. This is in line with international best practice and with measures to improve integrated transport planning more generally. I know there is very keen local interest in the future development of the harbour and I would encourage all the local stakeholders to participate positively in the process.
"In addition to being a successful commercial ferry port, this harbour is also the State's largest marine leisure amenity, an important maritime heritage site, and host to what is reputed to be the nation's most popular walk. The masterplan will help the company to successfully manage these multiple roles the future.
"I am particularly interested in making the most of the harbour's potential, both as a tourist attraction in its own right and as an attractive gateway for tourists to enter the country."
Major highlights of the Masterplan will be an International Diaspora Centre on the Carlisle Pier, which is expected to attract over 1 million visitors per year. There will be other major commercial attractions, appropriate residential development and a new cruise berthing facility to enable Dublin Bay to welcome the Next Generation Cruise Ships to Dun Laoghaire.
There will be many improvements for the public and the many Voluntary Groups who use the amenities of the harbour, including a huge increase in public access to the waterfront, new slipways for the general public to use, and a new public marina. The Masterplan is also making a specific commitment to enable Dun Laoghaire and Dublin Bay to host major International Sailing Events every year.
The Consultation Masterplan shows the Harbour Company's current thinking and asks people again for their views. It takes into account all the ideas received by post and through the www.dlharbour.ie/masterplan website, the survey of people walking the East Pier as well as the meetings held over the last six months with different stakeholders who live and run businesses in the area.
"Dun Laoghaire harbour is one of the most beautiful man-made harbours in the world. We want it to be recognised internationally as an exciting waterfront, marine and tourist destination – one which elegantly integrates the local town with a historic 200 year old harbour and offers a striking combination of modern amenities mixed with a traditional marine ambience in a Dublin Bay setting," says Dunne.